I am writing and linking to the oneword365 linkup hosted by themessymiddle. My word for the year is Hope. I look back on the past two and half months and I am amazed. Hope has found me, and held me and grown inside of me.
Last month my commitment was to try to walk as close to Jesus as I could. I told a friend that I was trying to lean in so close that I would ‘leave an imprint’. What I have learned in the past month, and in particular the past week is that I am already imprinted on God’s heart. He knows and understands me, like no one ever can or will. He understands even the bits that puzzle me about myself. On Thursday morning I read these words in my prayer book, and they describe me in the most extraordinarily accurate terms.
It was a day on which I needed the reassurance that it was ok to be me. That my dynamic, erratic, spontaneous, radical, audacious,committed, incoherent immaturity which leaves me unable to cope with institutions or settled things but which always hopes for our society to be better because we know God, has been seen. I don’t have to switch off one bit of me, I can be contradictory and confusing and passionate, and God will take me on the journey with him.
In leaning in I am not imprinting on him, but He is leaving an imprint on me. Gently, delicately, amazingly.
At some time I will write a post which sets out the events of the past week – the events of God’s workings in my life, but not today. I’m still trying to take it all in. What I do know is that God has spoken so clearly to me that there is no denying the words or the message.
I have hope.
In the very first post on this blog I wrote this :
“I have hope because of a God who loves me. I have hope because in Jesus he understands pain, and sadness, and loneliness and heartbreak. I have hope because he makes beautiful things from dust. I have hope because already he is bringing change that I could not have foreseen. and I have hope because no matter what the outcome is he will never stop loving me. I love that God is not limited by our linear time or thinking. I need a big God. I need an incomprehensible God.”
He has shown me this week that he is outside of time. He has shown me this week that he can change our hearts in an instant when we invite him to do that. He has shown me that there is a source of joy which makes no sense but is utterly life-giving. He loves me. He is big and incomprehensible and I know that I am weak and sometimes floundering , but so long as I keep leaning in, he will leave the imprint.
I resisted choosing hope as my word for the year, as it seemed, well, too hopeful.
But it chose me. Thank God.